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Ralph's Italian Restaurant: 100 Years and 100 Recipes Paperback – Dec 2000

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About the Author


JIMMY RUBINO JR. A native of South Philadelphia, Jimmy grew up in Ralph's Restaurant and "worked" there from the age of six on. After graduating from South Philadelphia High School, Rubino went to work for a relative's plumbing firm - but never really left the restaurant, working there several nights-a-week. His career as a plumber lasted only two years and at age 20 - in 1981 - he returned to the restaurant, full-time, and took a leadership role that has energized Ralph's and made sure that the family tradition would carry in to the 21st Century. Rubino's skills as a chef and his engaging personality have been widely quoted and recognized in the news media and he is a frequent guest on radio and TV. Rubino was a one of the nation's leading Michael Jordan memorabilia collectors and now has compiled an impressive collection of corkscrews. Jimmy and his wife Holly have two children - Ryan and Gabrielle - and reside in suburban Bucks County, Pa. TED TAYLOR "I am Italian by marriage, and that qualified me to work with Jimmy on this book" says Taylor of his 32-year-long union with the former Cynthia Mary DeMarco of South Philadelphia. President of his own Public Relations and Marketing firm, Taylor joined Ralph's as their publicist in 1999 and has worked with the restaurant on their year-long 100th anniversary celebration. Ted grew up in suburban Glenside and has been a baseball fan his entire life. (The fact that both he and Rubino collected sports memorabilia is what brought them together in the first place. They are friends first, the business thing came later on.) An educator by profession (he has been a college athletic director, baseball coach, English and Mass Media professor) Taylor has written two books on baseball card collecting and has been a sports hobby columnist for The Philadelphia Daily News since 1991. Ted and Cindy live in suburban Philadelphia and have four children and four grandchildren. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 11 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
At First Glance, It's Okay... May 2 2012
By Mother Crone - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wasn't going to write a review but after I saw some of the ridiculously high prices some third party sellers were charging for this book, I felt it would be helpful to give you my first impressions of this cookbook.

It's probably just me but I was disappointed in this cookbook after all the hoopla on "The Chew" TV show. I'm sure that many of us had to pay top dollar for this cookbook after "The Chew" program because any third party copies of the cookbook sold out immediately.

I guess I was disappointed because the book is really just a history of the restaurant with recipes (printed in ALL CAPS) included. Most of the recipes had at least 3-4 cups of cooking or olive oil, very light on seasonings and one master recipe for marinara sauce which was referred to in many of the recipes. I'm guessing the chef would say that they do not season their foods because they want their product to stand on it's own. However, I'm sure they must use seasonings other than salt and pepper and oregano.

To be fair, I haven't tried any of the recipes yet because, with the exception of the meatball recipe, nothing really intrigued or excited me. Again, this is just my humble opinion and I realize that I am in the minority.

On the positive side, the book contains much trivia, vintage photos and pictures of celebrities who have visited the restaurant. The book appears to be privately self-published but well laid out. The cover is impactful and well done.

If you weren't able to get a reasonably priced copy of the cookbook, please don't lose any sleep over it. My advice to you would be to be patient and wait for additional, low cost third party copies to appear on

UPDATE 5/12/12:
I just made the master recipe for Marinara Sauce. While it is excellent, I've had recipes that were just as good. A few things about this recipe...this sauce is extremely chunky so if your family prefers smooth, you're going to have to process it in the food processor or blender. Also, I would recommend that you FINELY MINCE the basil and parsley. Chopping it doesn't integrate it as well as finely minced. Also, I severely cut down on the amount of olive oil due to cost and simply because I don't like an entire cup of olive oil in my recipes.

Having said this, I would definitely make it again with my minor adjustments.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
The best red sauce Dec 18 2000
By Eric Elia - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I've lived in San Francisco and spent time in New York, but you can't find a better red sauce than Ralph's in South Philly. The book captures the personality of the Philadelphia institution and delivers some of the best and most authentic Italian recipes.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Over Rated May 7 2012
By R. Quinn - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was looking forward to receiving this cookbook, but was very disappointed. The cost of the book with shipping and handling was $30. When I received the book it was a small paperback book. The were no pictures of the food in the book. Although it is nice to have a history of the restaurant, I was looking for a cookbook. The 100 receipes are written very briefly and scattered through out the stories of the restaurant. For $30 I think some color photo of what the dishes will look like would be included. This was an overpriced paperback.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Unbelievable May 31 2006
By Jane - Published on
Format: Paperback
I haven't gotten this book, but I was just at Ralph's which I and 4 other people found by accident while vacationing in the area. This is probably the best Italian food I have ever had. I don't know if I can duplicate the incredible food with the cookbook, but I am going to try. I had linguine with crab meat sauce which was so delicate and sweet. Another person had the veal parmesan which was beyond fabulous. Another had the baked lasagna which I took an extra order of it home to Detroit where I shared it with a few people who found it extraordinary. The restaurant is wonderful; the staff amazing and I'm so glad there's a cookbook because they don't deliver!
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
mav Jan. 3 2012
By marie0918 - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great little gift to attach to a restraunt gift card. The book has some history and receipes from the restraunt. Compact enough to keep on the kitchen counter.